What is Sport Psychology?
Think for a moment on a gamer you admire. It could be one of the all-time great gamers like Faker, Dendi, Rekkles or pashaBiceps, or it could be a combination of players. Your choice, just picture the best gamer you can think of. Once you have it on your mind, think what are the characteristics that make up this great gamer… Probably you thought about things like “great mechanical skills” and “extensive game knowledge”, but I’m pretty sure you also thought of other characteristics like “great shot making”, “right mindset to face with difficulties” or “keeping it cool under pressure”. By beginning to realize this, you’re aware that great gaming is not only about mechanical superiority and game knowledge. Although these two are necessary, they are not sufficient to be a great gamer (otherwise there would be tons of “great players”). There are many other elements that come into play and many of them are related to the “mental side” of gaming.
Think about it in another way: we all have witnessed those “why the hell s/he did that?!” (aka WTF?!) moments while watching pro gamers. We are certain that they have the mechanical abilities to avoid those mistakes or understand perfectly why that was a terrible decision. Although they have trained a lot, they have the knowledge, the skills and all that is required to play well, something else -call it tilting, lack of confidence, lack of focus, fears, emotions, etc.- was interfering with their performance. Here is where sport psychology comes into play. Our job as performance coaches is to help gamers develop a high performance mindset, deal with stressful situations, have all the required skills (in and out of the game) to become better, among many other things. If you decide to work on the mental side of gaming, it doesn’t mean you have a problem or you’re “mentally weak”, it simply means that you’re willing to work on all aspects of gaming to become a better player, and yes, that means also working on the mental side.
Performance coaches are becoming more and more popular in many “traditional” sports, so why this wouldn’t be the case in esports? Currently, several LoL teams including Fnatic and TSM have sport psychologist in their staff and many teams have had boot camps where performance coaches had important roles. Currently, there are apps, websites, trainings and many other resources to become better on the “fundamental” skills. Yet, the resources available on the mental side of gaming are scarce. This is why we have decided to create this space, where we can offer tools, skills and discussions to anyone who’s passionate about gaming and improvement as an overall gamer.
Sport Psychology is the science and art of helping people reach their highest levels of performance. Whether you are a professional gamer or someone who wants to get better in your game. We are a group of Performance Coaches from a variety of countries who have a deep passion about gaming and esports. We believe that we can help all gamers out there who are working hard in getting better and those of you whore committed in becoming pros. We won’t teach you how to become better mechanically or other “fundamental” skills (that’s the role of other Coaches), we will help you display those great mechanics not only when the stakes are low on where everything is going well, but to perform consistently at a high level, especially when you need it the most. We will be doing this by offering frequent and applied content that is related to those questions and issues you’re facing. In short, we will provide proved psychological skills that will help you increase your performance, not only in gaming but also finding a good balance in your life. Because balanced players, become great players.
As any type of coaching, working on the mental side of esports takes time, effort and commitment. But you have done it before, you have learned that the journey to get better takes effort, time and practice. As any type of training, it’s not only a matter of going to one class, going for a run one day, or lifting weights from time to time. It takes time, effort and a lot of motivation to accomplish the goals you’ve set. Mental training is not different from any other kind of training – it requires a constant and determined commitment to work on you. The motto “practice, practice, practice” is not only a matter of skill training, it’s also the way you get better on your mind game. Furthermore, it means to work harder on certain areas that you have tried to avoid or you think are difficult to change.
If you ever wonder why certain player has dropped his level, why is s/he not achieving certain results as easily as before, and there are no tangible problems (e.g., mechanical skills, lack of understanding of the meta), you came to the right place. We’ll try to answer to those questions, because there’s a very big chance it is related to the mental side. It is our goal to provide you posts that will help you understand how to become a better player in all aspects of gaming. We will provide you tools and skills so you can start working in the “mental side” of gaming.
Hopefully, we sparked your interest to do whatever it takes to become the gamer you’ve always wanted to be, by gaining the winning edge not only on your mechanical abilities and knowledge of the game, but also by cultivating a mindset that will help you reach even higher levels of performance.